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Full text of "The History Of Western Education"


arithmetic. The proof of this is that to this day (circa 731) there
are still some of their pupils alive who know Latin and Greek
as well as they know their own laguage." But this peripatetic
method of instruction, though admirably suited for pioneer work
in education, was no longer required once schools had become
common. By the Eighth Century the bishops, whose duties
compelled them to move about from place to place, had begun
to delegate their teaching duties to members of their councils
permanently in residence in the cathedrals. The care of the
song school fell in the first instance to the official who is called
the cantor in Eleventh-Century statutes. The grammar school
was entrusted to the schoolmaster (variously named scholasticusy
magister scholarum, archischola)> who was also the lawyer of
the chapter and was consequently called at a later date the

At this stage no sharp distinction was made between ordinary

school studies and the subjects of higher instruction.   The basis

of the curriculum was the seven liberal arts as expounded in

encyclopedic fashion in the works of Martianus Capella, Cassio-

dorus and Isidore, in combination with law and theology.    In

a poem on The Bishops and Saints of the Church of York, written

by Alcuin (whose work as a teacher we shall have to consider

later), there is a noteworthy survey of the studies pursued in the

cathedral school at York under his master Albert about the middle

of the Eighth Century, which may be taken as representing the

curriculum of this period in good schools.   " A man of piety and

wisdom, at once teacher and priest, he became the colleague of

Bishop Egbert.   By him he was made advocate of the clergy and

at the same time schoolmaster in the city of York.   There he

moistened thirsty hearts with manifold streams of learning and

varied dews of study, imparting to some the arts of grammatical

science, pouring out on others the rivers of rhetoric*   Some he

polished on the whetstone of law, some he taught to sing together

the songs of the Muses, while others he set to play on the flute

of Castalia and run with the lyre over the hills of Parnassus.

To others, again, he gave instruction concerning the harmony of

heaven, the labours of sun and moon, the five belts of the sky,

the seven planets, the laws of the fixed stars and of their rising

and setting, the movements of the air, the quaking of sea and

land, the nature of men, cattle, birds and wild beasts, the different